Yucatan risks losing more than 47,000 companies to the pandemic

'We are in a much more alarming scenario than we initially thought,' says Coparmex president

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Restaurants, hotels and other service businesses are among the most endangered in Yucatan these days, according to a new study. Photo: File

The state’s precarious economic situation is even worse than many thought, a study by the Yucatan Center for Competitiveness concludes.

More than 47,000 Yucatan businesses could close their doors permanently, the CCY report says. This means that an estimated 142,768 formal jobs could be lost due to the health and economic crisis.

It comes down to the state’s economic architecture, dominated by the trade and services sectors most affected by the crisis. An estimated 95% of companies in Yucatan are considered small or micro businesses, and salaries and Gross Domestic Product figures are low.

The businesses most affected by the crisis generate 82% of the formal jobs in Yucatan, the report added.

Yucatan is one of the most economically vulnerable states in the country, according to the report.

“The main conclusion of the report is that we are in a much more alarming scenario than we initially thought,” warned Fernando Ponce Díaz, president of Coparmex Mérida, a business guild. “We do not know what will happen to thousands of workers and companies.”

“Ultimately, this information must lead us to take action on the matter as quickly as possible and in a unified way,” he added.

After warning that “money is finite and when the situation is exhausted it becomes unsustainable,” the business leader stressed that recovery will only be possible with resources that, for obvious reasons, neither the state government nor the private sector have.

“And since the federal government is not going to give anything, you have to go out and look for them, see where we can get them, because without money you cannot do anything. We need to agree as soon as possible and do things well to see if we can escape with the least possible damage, but the effects of this catastrophe will last for years, there is no doubt about it,” he said.

Amenoffis Acosta Ríos, vice president of Coparmex and director of the CCY, said nothing that puts health at risk will be supported by Coparmex. “We have no doubt that life is the most important thing there is.”

But businesses should be prepared to spring into action when the pandemic ends.

“We should already have that conversation built so that when we all go back to work – we’re not saying it should be tomorrow – we have a plan ready to execute it.”

Source: Diario de Yucatan

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